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Virgin Islanders to celebrate the Caribbean in Harlem

Bevan Springer | 8/29/2013, 10 a.m. | Updated on 8/29/2013, 10 a.m.
Bevan Springer

NEW YORK (Aug. 29)–Reggae sensation Pressure Buss Pipe will headline this weekend’s Caribbean Cultural Fest, presented by Virgin Islanders United (VIU) in the village of Harlem on Sunday, Sept. 1 from 2 to 7 p.m.

“We have pulled out all the stops to make this show one of the best that we have ever delivered,” said VIU President Janet Parris. “This event proudly spotlights and celebrates the music and the culture of the U.S. Virgin Islands and other islands in the Caribbean by fusing today’s hit reggae and soca music with classic calypso artists. The result is a show that has something for everyone and truly reflects the very best that the Caribbean has to offer. No matter what Caribbean nation you hail from, remember to bring your flag representing your island and come ready to party,” she added.

The free annual Caribbean music concert will feature the top Virgin Islands musician, known for his hit song “Love and Affection,” at Jackie Robinson Park, 85 Bradhurst Ave. at 145th Street. The festival will be broadcast live to the U.S. Virgin Islands on WSTA radio (1340 AM) and to the world at www.wsta.com.

Organized by VIU, a New York-based nonprofit organization, the festival has also attracted the Tonik Band, gospel artist Jolene McClean, the Mighty Swallow, the Image Band from Washington, D.C., and soca starlet Rudy.

The show, hosted by former VIU President Kevin Hughes and well-known Caribbean radio personality Prince Kalunda, will also feature steel pan music, the famous mocko-jumbie revue a traditional clowns presentation and a vendor’s market complete with authentic Caribbean dishes beverages and novelties.

“VIU is extremely thankful to our VI-based sponsors that see the value in supporting this event so far from our shores,” said Kevin Hughes, who is based in St. Thomas. “They understand the importance of the show, as it takes place during the big West Indian/Labor Day weekend celebration in New York.”

One of the primary goals of VIU is to get festival attendees, whether they are originally from the territory or not, to visit the Virgin Islands, and experience the rich heritage and culture of the Virgin Islands for themselves.

“This is important, as the New York/East Coast sector is one of the main areas from where many of our U.S.-based tourists hail,” he added.

Caribbean Cultural Fest 2013 is supported by the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Tourism, the West Indian Company Limited, Virgin Islands Oncology and Hematology, Children’s Dental Care, Virgin Islands Daily News and WSTA Radio.

VIU is dedicated to promoting the culture and heritage of the U.S. Virgin Islands. Caribbean Cultural Fest is VIU’s signature event and one of the largest celebrations of Virgin Islands pride and culture within North America. For further information, visit www.virginislandersunited.org.